Erik SpickardSonya DonatoDan Nguyen

Amgen, Rathmann and Wilcox Fellowships Awarded to Outstanding Incoming MCDB and BMSE Graduate Students in the 2012/13 Academic Year

May 3, 2013

Congratulations to three outstanding incoming PhD graduate students for receiving prestigious awards that will support part of their stipend and tuition expenses in their first year of graduate school. They are Sonya Donato (from UCSD) and Erick Spikard (from UC Davis) in the MCDB graduate program and Dan Nguyen (from Harvard) in the BMSE graduate program.

Sonya received both a Rathmann and Wilcox Fellowship. She commented, "I would like to thank Gary and Sue Wilcox and all the donors of the George and Joy Rathmann Fellowship for their generous support toward my PhD education. I would also like to thank the MCDB program for welcoming me to the program and to my family and friends for their loving support".

Erik Spikard received a Rathmann Fellowship due to his exemplary efforts learning, working and contributing to the field of biomedicine. He commented, "I am very grateful to have been chosen by MCDB to receive this fellowship. UCSB is a great place to start my PhD. I plan to make the most of the resources and support I have been given and contribute to the intellectual community here. I am also thankful for my previous mentors who have helped me develop into an aspiring biomedical scientist, my experiences, and all of the important people in my life who have and continue to support my efforts."

Dan Nguyen is the outstanding BMSE student who received one year of financial support from Amgen equivalent to $25,000. He comments, "I'd like to express my deepest gratitude to the Amgen Fellowship and to the BMSE and MCDB programs for providing me the opportunity to pursue cutting-edge research. Not only can I foster my scientific interest and continue my development as an investigator, but I get to do so while nestled between beautiful mountains and beaches. Some people have asked how one does research in paradise. A friend of mine form Arizona provided me with the quaint response…"In a hammock". Thank you UCSB and Amgen for everything."

Fellowships like these are invaluable for helping MCDB to recruit top students and to foster their continued excellence in MCDB research.